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In Pictures: Five Eight-Slot Cases For CrossFire And SLI

Expanded Front-Panel Connectivity

In Win goes a step further than its competitors with two eSATA front-panel ports, even as USB 3.0 attempts to extinguish eSATA from the portable device market. The Dragon Rider addresses both interfaces, in addition to USB 2.0 and FireWire.

More Motherboard Cooling

Raised sections on the left-side panel provide additional room for cable routing and an intake fan behind your motherboard. Four grommets for external liquid cooling lines highlight the back panel, while two 120 mm fan mounts at the top support internal radiators.

Exposing Your Secrets

While many builders try to hide cables between the motherboard tray and side panel, the Dragon Rider’s open design lets everyone see what’s going on behind the scenes. A few extra cable ties would help with cable management in the limited hidden space, though.

A USB Surprise

Although this chassis emerged many months after the development of the standardized front-panel USB 3.0 header, we were a little disappointed to find that the Dragon Rider can’t take advantage of that connector. Instead, it takes us back to 2009 with pass-through cables for the rear-panel ports.

120 mm Fans Aplenty

While the Dragon Rider includes a 220 mm side fan, the rest of its coolers are 120 mm across, with no option to use larger fans. Here we see another view of its 2 x 120 mm radiator support, of which only one side has a factory-installed fan. Other options include removing the 220 mm side fan and replacing it with up to six 120 mm blowers.

A Latch That Works

In Win is one of several companies to recently adopt a plunging card latch. Unlike previous-generation flip-top designs, this one actually works with every card we could find.

Trays, Rails, Or A Tray Full Of Rails?

While newer cases usually employ drive trays, and older cases use drive rails, the Dragon Rider packs a stack of rails onto both sides of a tray. The downside to rails was that they'd constantly get misplaced. But the tray gives users a convenient place to store unused parts until they're needed. Another tray adapts 3.5” external drives to a 5.25” bay, and both of these are also mounted on rails.

Support Your SSD

In case you missed it, this page's title mentions a singular SSD. In Win solved the problem of lost rails by mounting them on a 5.25” adapter tray, but the rails still only support one device size. Thus, 2.5” drives won’t fit into 3.5” hard drive bays without the purchase of separate bay adapters, and the case has only one 2.5” tray.

Rosewill Blackhawk

Rosewill targets value seekers by providing a medium-duty eight slot case with fewer frills and a bunch of functionality. A tinted side window accents the Blackhawk’s clean design.

Striking Convenience In An Understated Design

Rather than load up its front panel with buttons and jacks that few people use, Rosewill expanded the Blackhawk’s USB connectivity to six ports and stuck a mildly-concealed 3.5” drive bay behind them. Professional techs will probably notice this right away, since many of them use a working system to scan or backup the drives of failed systems.

Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.
  • juntaozhu15
    No lian li lancool k-series?
    Reply
  • Yuka
    I'm using the HAF 932 AMD Edition and it's just marvelous. It's the HAF-X in essence, but with lil' more red, lol.

    Anyway, all of those look like very good cases, but the HAF comes with lil' wheels; It's very practical when you're tweaking in a timely manner and have to move around the case a lot (around the house, that is). It's really heavy once it's fully installed and all. Do the others have lil' wheels as an extra accessory? I'm really grateful to that feature as it's also easier to move it and clean (have it at floor level).

    Cheers!
    Reply
  • clownbaby
    why do case manufacturers insist on styling their cases like chunks of scrap metal off the battlestar galactica. Even Lian Li is trending away from sleek, stylish cases. We don't all want a piece sitting on our desk that tells office visitors we've just come from the comic book store.

    I do appreciate all of the advances in the internals of cases, but for god's sake make nicer looking cases. Not plastic/steel, ostentatious, led light blasting ugly. Do use aluminum, sleek simple lines, minimalist exterior designs and some adult taste.
    Reply
  • bystander
    Who needs that much space? How about anyone with an ATX motherboard featuring a PCIe x16 slot in the seventh-slot position and three or more dual-slot graphics cards?

    It's also useful for those with 2 cards where the first 2 slots only have 1 extra slot between them and you are using 2 slot cards. i.e. Gigabyte ga-x58a-ud3r motherboard.

    I wish more enclosures make it available.
    Reply
  • clonazepam
    Thank you. The format wins this time. It's just done right. :D
    Reply
  • ikyung
    clownbabywhy do case manufacturers insist on styling their cases like chunks of scrap metal off the battlestar galactica. Even Lian Li is trending away from sleek, stylish cases. We don't all want a piece sitting on our desk that tells office visitors we've just come from the comic book store.I do appreciate all of the advances in the internals of cases, but for god's sake make nicer looking cases. Not plastic/steel, ostentatious, led light blasting ugly. Do use aluminum, sleek simple lines, minimalist exterior designs and some adult taste.Nicely said.
    Reply
  • master9716
    LOOK TOMS. WE ALREADY KNOW U HAVE SOME BULLDOZER PROCESSORS TESTING IN YOUR LABS AS WE SPEAK SO STOP STALLING AND ATLEAST LET SOME INTERN LEAK SOME BENCHMARKS>
    Reply
  • renz496
    master9716LOOK TOMS. WE ALREADY KNOW U HAVE SOME BULLDOZER PROCESSORS TESTING IN YOUR LABS AS WE SPEAK SO STOP STALLING AND ATLEAST LET SOME INTERN LEAK SOME BENCHMARKS>
    :lol:

    if you want tom's to release the benchmark ask AMD to release the processor now
    Reply
  • Lewis57
    clownbabywhy do case manufacturers insist on styling their cases like chunks of scrap metal off the battlestar galactica. Even Lian Li is trending away from sleek, stylish cases. We don't all want a piece sitting on our desk that tells office visitors we've just come from the comic book store.I do appreciate all of the advances in the internals of cases, but for god's sake make nicer looking cases. Not plastic/steel, ostentatious, led light blasting ugly. Do use aluminum, sleek simple lines, minimalist exterior designs and some adult taste.
    My thoughts exactly. Although, due to the benefits these cases bring to the table and the fact that they aren't as costly as a Lian Li case, I may actually consider one to stick under my desk. Would love it if the ones with LED fans came with the ability to turn off the LED without turning off the fan.
    Reply
  • hardcore_gamer
    master9716LOOK TOMS. WE ALREADY KNOW U HAVE SOME BULLDOZER PROCESSORS TESTING IN YOUR LABS AS WE SPEAK SO STOP STALLING AND ATLEAST LET SOME INTERN LEAK SOME BENCHMARKS>I asked G man about Bulldozer...He said "prepare for unforeseen consequences"
    Reply